I think my cell phone touch screen is worn slap out.
Time and time again, I find myself checking for email, Twitter mentions, and Facebook wall post. Proof of acceptance. Proof that someone is thinking of me. Proof that I’m OK.
My self-focus is like a rip tide supplanting my footing and sucking me into dangerous depths.
Soon, I find myself flailing in the murky, black waters where all I can think about is me, me, me. In those waters, everything I do and say is for personal gain. Service becomes self-promotion. Prayer becomes public display. Encouragement becomes eager fishing for approval.
Recently, as I lay in bed begging God to restore a friendship I never thought I’d lose, God spoke.
Lee, picture what your life would be like if you hungered for more of me as much as you hunger for human approval. I have so much more to give you. So much more. When will you stop this striving for the lesser thing?
My heart sank deep into the mattress as His words settled in.
What do I do, Lord?
In the quiet, I waited on Him.
With His finger, he traced His instructions on my heart.
- Take your “heart medicine” every morning. Let My Word regulate your heart to beat in rhythm with Mine.
“I gain understanding from your precepts; therefore I hate every wrong path. Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.” (Psalm 119:104-105 NIV)
- Let Me renew your mind. Every time your thoughts stray toward human approval, call out to Me. Say My name. Sing My praises. Simply say, “Help!”
“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.” (Romans 12:2 NIV)
- Trip up the tempter. The evil one knows human approval is a foothold he can use to paralyze you. He will continue to jab at you until you jab back. Every time you make the choice to focus on Me, a tiny piece of that foothold crumbles. Continued obedience destroys footholds, giving the evil one no place to stand.
“We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.” (2 Corinthians 10:5 NIV)
- Hide My Word in your heart. Replace his lies with My truth. When the lies swoop through your heart like a garbage heap breeze, let My Spirit wind clear the air.
“I seek you with all my heart; do not let me stray from your commands. I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you.” (Psalm 119:10-11 NIV)
- Start now and don’t stop. It’s time to get stubborn. No more quitting when life gets hard. No more letting your guard down “just this once.” No more idols. I am Your God.
“Get rid of the vile images you have set your eyes on, and do not defile yourselves with the idols of Egypt. I am the LORD your God.” (Ezekiel 20:7 NIV)
Lord, I’m so sorry. So sorry I keep adding bricks to Satan’s foothold into my life. It’s time to tear that foothold down. Give me an insatiable craving for Your word and Your presence. Give me a hatred for my sin and a fierce determination to be holy. I can’t do it with sheer effort. I need Your power coursing through my mental, emotional, and spiritual muscles. Beef me up, Lord, for Your glory and my good. AMEN
By: LeeBird, Prayer Gifts
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Be the Boss of My Words | Prayer Gifts says
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It’s kind of amazing that God would give something to you that He’s probably been wanting to tell me for a long time. I’m so self absorbed. It’s time to take steps towards loving Him again with all my heart and my neighbor as I love me.
Thank you, Leebird.
Me to Donna and to think I was hesitant to click on the blog this morning
Donna and Anonymous, As long as we’re taking steps toward Him, our self-focus will keep on fading! Glad to know others are steppin’ with me!
I so needed to read this! I’ve been in this spot for quite a while now! And finally realized that he’s the only one that will fill this hole in my heart! Thanks gor sharing!!!
Thanks so much, Kelbi! It encourages me to know I’m not the only one who struggles with this. Moving forward together!
WOW – Just what I needed today
Me too, Stacey…me too! 🙂
That is so beautifully put into words,words that I could never of compiled myself but I sure can relate to all that was said. I have been struggling with a wait problem all my life,Iam my 2nd time doing the Made to Crave books,I am trying to turn all my cravings over to God. If it is okay with you may I print your post and hang it on my frig.for constant reminder of all thoses great words you spoke and the Bible verses.
Thanks for the kind words needed to hear that today!!!
Made to Crave is such a truth-filled book! I should probably go back and soak in it again. It was the first book I bought on my Kindle back when it first came out. Craving more and more of HIM! Lee
and OF COURSE you can print the post out! Come visit me at my blog, http://prayergifts.net and you will find a wealth of scripture prayers to encourage you! Just search my archives!
AMAZING. Amazingly timed (for me), amazingly truthful, amazingly poignant, and you point directly at His amazing grace. Thank you for being raw, real, and authentic.
Just thank you.
Thanks so much Elizabeth! He is amazing!
Darcy @ Message in a Mason Jar says
Good thoughts, Lee. I was nodding my head the other night when Kristen Strong shared Psalm 73:16 as part of the inRL videos. It’s a theme passage for me! Just two days later I’d be singing a song I wrote, “Until,” based on the same passage, to help prepare women at a local church for an upcoming conference. When we look out to people to get our view of the world and ourselves, we get tripped up, come close to stumbling. But when we finally enter into the sanctuary of God, we see things right.
Love His sanctuary, Darcy! It’s my happy place. I heard Kristen share that verse, too. Weren’t the inRL videos a blessing?
Lee, what amazing instructions He put on your heart – and instructions filled with love nd forgiveness. Thank you so much for sharing them with us.
Caroline, I sure am glad He’s a tender God. If he was a drill sergeant, I’d be crying the ugly cry every, single day. Love you!
thank you for sharing this. My heart and mind needed it!
Glad to encourage you, Robin! I need this truth so much.
AMEN to this post!! It’s what we all need as warriors for Christ. Thanks a bunch for sharing it with everyone!
It’s a battle…so glad to know WE WIN!
I’m so grateful for this post! I know in my heart that God’s word held all the answers to my life’s problems but I went about it all the wrong way by looking for it in human approval. Thank you for posting up the scriptures that reminds me where I need to go to satisfy my craving for human approval and replace the enemy’s lies with His truth!
God’s word is so perfect for everything we face. Thanks so much for your words, Tina!
Don’t we all need this post. I recently deactivated my Facebook page. I haven’t missed it at all. Thank you for reminding us bout too much “me” time.
I’ve taken time away from my FB and Twitter pages before. I pray I won’t have to deactivate them because I love the connections, but connection with Him is the most important one. If He tells me to close up shop on social media, I will do it. Thanks, Sarita!
This is something I really needed to hear this morning. I read all the words as if it was God talking directly to me. @Sheila I too am going back thru the Made to Crave book. If you would like to email me, I’d love to have some extra support… Wifemotherme05@gmail.com I have struggled with my weight my whole life too. I’m struggling to find my want too! I get on the band wagon & then I lose my want too & decide to hide me sliding backwards from everyone thinking no one knows what’s going on, but God knows. I am definitely writing down these scriptures for me to learn. Thank you Lee for being so transparent.
Thanks, Treva…your transparency blesses me, too!
Julie Sunne says
I get it completely, LeeBird! It’s like I’m on a treadmill of needing human acknowledgment and can’t get off. Thanks for the great encouragement to make it about Jesus Christ and Him only.
Ok, Julie…you and me on the count of three…1…2…3….JUMPING OFF THE HUMAN APPROVAL TREADMILL! Whew! That felt good!
Tina miller says
“he will continue to jab at you until you jab back” I just want to say at the moment i read that … I heard chains fall to the ground.. No more good Christian girl rolling with the punches.. Now before you stands a mighty warrior! Thank you!!
I heard the clank, Tina! Praise God!
Kelli Wommack says
Lee, thank you for authentically sharing what most of us deal with on a regular basis. Social media feeds this need for approval as even the terminology is based on “likes” and “following.” Never have we been given more to meet our need for approval and yet never have we been left longing for more. Only God can fill us. Only God can satisfy. May we return to our first love that will never leave us, forsake us and loves us more than any other!
You bless me, Kelli, with your wise words. My office is still a mess.
Thanks! I needed this too!
So blessed to be able to bless you, Melissa. Thanks so much!
Mary Lou says
Thanks you for your words. Reminded me of one I heard the other day about the idol of control. Our God knows us and our every need. How I praise Him for caring about the little details too.
He cares so much, Mary Lou! And oh, how He knows us.
Thank you. Very well said and a great reminder.
Thanks so much KHall!
Thank you, KHall!
Definitely hits home with me lately. That is why I am out today trying to be in the real world, and I still had to check my email. Approval addiction is a beast, but slain with God’s approval.
Love the idea of God’s approval slaying my approval addiction. Let it rip, Lord!
“accidentally” read may 3 in “streams in the desert”this a.m. It says.”so why don,t I call on His name? Why do I run to this person or that person when God is so near and will hear my faintest call.”
Thnk you Lord for knowing just what we need to hear and tuck into our hearts.
When the Lord bombards me with the same truth from a variety of places, I call that taking a ride in his “theme park.” He loves it when we listen. Thanks Sarita!
Cynthia McGarity says
Leebird! I just had to share this. I awoke this morning and for some reason, I kept singing, “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet…” – you know, the Michael W. Smith song? I don’t even know more of the song than this so I just kept humming it, singing the one phrase over and over. And there in bold print in your lovely message today was the echo: “I gain understanding from your precepts; therefore I hate every wrong path. Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.” (Psalm 119:104-105 NIV) Thank you for MY heart medicine this morning. You have confirmed for me that this is an important message for me to heed today and each day.
That gives me goosies, Cynthia! Makes my heart glad that the Spirit used my post to confirm His message to you. I suspect I’ll be humming “Thy Word” for the rest of the day, thank you very much! 🙂
Thank you for this hardcore truth. I am so thankful for your words today–hard words that I needed to hear.
The hard words tend to be the healing words. So thankful the Lord loves me enough to speak the truth to my spirit.
Liz G. says
I love how you put your ‘real’ relationships with God and with people before your computer time, I think that then, when you sit down to share you have more to wisdom to give from yourself and your faith. Quiet times are so important!
Thanks, Liz. I don’t always get it right…the lure of those notifications on my phone get the best of me at times, but I’m trying, and I know the Lord sees that.
I am so here. I was so embarassed to let someone know my internet was cut off and I couldnt attend the In RL conference. I was like they will know I am a struggling single mother. they will think why is she in our group. so many thoughts of will they accept me? crowd my mind. But God comforted me. I am not ashamed, no longer looking for approval but a connection..a hug. Thanks for reading. (im at work)..:)
Sending you a big ol’ LeeBird hug sweet sister! I pray you feel the Lord always with you as you raise up your precious kids. You are not alone. ((HUG))
Thank you LeeBird. I so enjoy being in this community. I hope to order the DVDs and upload a picture of me in my InRL t shirt!!! Be blessed.
Jennifer Dawn McLucas says
Thank you so much for sharing this. As a new blogger I’m finding this trap a difficult one to avoid. At first I was obsessed with my stats and trying to get new readers, but I quickly realized that wasn’t what God wanted for me. Now I fight hard against the temptation to even look at my stats, lest I become driven by them. Popularity is a lesser thing, real relationship is what I’m interested in building.
I am so thankful for the friendships I’ve made through blogging, Jennifer! My blog community blesses me every, single day. I’d rather have a handful of followers who share their lives and hearts with me than a bagillion lurkers…that’s for sure!
Jennifer Harman says
Thank you for this!! Came just when I needed it! I have been fighting this myself, putting false idols (in the form of a desire for a relationship) before Him. I made the decision last Sunday, after much prompting by the Holy Spirit (whom I think was working overtime on that one, cause I kept resisting), to stop slowly backing away from the idea of a relationship and just full force end all thoughts and actions of my own doing to make it happen. I chose to do something different, and despite everything in me saying I should be freaking out right now because I am giving up control, I am at peace. And THAT is how I know it is God. I needed this reminder today. Thank you 🙂
Jennifer, it’s so hard to pry open the death grip we have on something we want…but you are so right…once we do it, it’s all peace. You’d think we’d learn and keep our palms open all the time. Slow learner, I am. Thanks for sharing your heart!
Beth Williams says
Giving things up to God can turn out to be a good idea. He has plans for you that we know nothing about. Just ask God for what it is that you want and wait on His perfect timing. If it is meant to be He will make it happen in ways you never thought! This will take some patience on our part, which can be hard for some.
Praying for a peace about this situation!
Thank you for sharing this intimate conversation with God~ He is AMAZING and I am forever grateful for he’s forgiveness.
Believing he makes all things new!
He surely is amazing Bernadette. Earlier, I found myself singing, “You are my all in all.” He is everything we need and He always says the right thing!
Carole McDuffee says
This is RIGHT on Lee, and so beautifully written! Thank you for your words of encouragement this morning! I needed this reminder…
Thanks so much Carole! Trying to live it!
Thank you. Thank you so much. Your words are so powerful.
I have repeated he prayer at the end so many times, I almost have it memorized.
I want an insatiable craving for Christ. I want a fierce determination to be holy.
Thank you for putting into words, the thoughts and desires that I could not express.
Thank you for sharing your heart Lorraine! I am praying that prayer along with you. If you need more scripture-based prayers, be sure to visit my website http://prayergifts.net
SO good, Lee. Thank you for sharing this. JUST today, in a moment of discouragement I found myself searching the screen. The same search: “Someone, love me.” Oh you hit it right on! Thank you for sharing this. Bless you, sister.
It’s so hard to know the right balance. I mean, we’re created to need love from people…but our deepest fulfillment comes from Him alone. Help us to get it right, Lord!
This is exactly what I was praying about this morning! Thank you so much for your transparency and truth! I, too, am turning back to my Made To Crave book AGAIN! I struggle to let Him fill me because I am so quick to move when things get uncomfortable. I look for the “quick fix” that never brings any peace instead of being still and remembering that He is God! I am trying to be grateful that he has put this struggle in my life to keep me continually turning to Him. He knows us, loves us, and sees beauty in all of our broken places.
Thanks for the blessing today!
Thankful for the struggle. Hard to live, huh? Much easier to whine. 😉
Stephanie Hanes says
This I’ve been convicted of so much this past week. Where do I place my hope? In whom do I find my worth? If it’s in the world, I fail…if it’s in Him, I succeed. I have given myself a social media break this week from facebook and blogging and it’s been so freeing to just focus on what He is trying to speak to me instead of wondering whether I should post this or that and how my words will be received…because the only one whose approval REALLY matters is His.